“And they made Darth Vader’s death meaningless”: Star Wars Fans Couldn’t Agree More With George Lucas Over His Biggest Criticism For The Force Awakens

George Lucas and fans are on the same page when it comes to their stance on The Force Awakens.

Star Wars The Force Awakens, George Lucas
Credit : wikimedia commons / Chin tin tin

SUMMARY

  • To George Lucas, it was important that each entry in the IP added something new to the franchise.
  • Considering The Force Awakens failed to bring something new to the table, Lucas was left disappointed.
  • Fans too couldn't agree more with Lucas' stance on the film.
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Despite being seen as a step down compared to the original trilogy, George Lucas’ prequel trilogy did add something new to the galaxy far, far away, which can’t be said for the sequels. While it was 2019’s The Rise of Skywalker that put the final nail in the coffin for the sequel trilogy, which pushed Disney to stray away from the big screen releases, the initial entry too failed to win over Lucas.

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Lucas criticized the films for their lack of originality, and fans couldn’t agree more with that sentiment, especially in the case of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

George Lucas Was Disappointed by the Lack of Originality in The Force Awakens

Daisy Ridley as Rey in 2015's Star Wars: The Force Awakens
A Still from Star Wars: The Force Awakens | Walt Disney Pictures

For George Lucas, it was important that each entry added something new to the franchise, and was disappointed to find out that the first entry in the sequel trilogy didn’t follow in his footsteps. Directed by J.J. Abrams, The Force Awakens was criticized by fans for being too similar to A New Hope and lacking originality and a strong compelling story of its own.

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In Bob Iger‘s biography, the Disney CEO recalled the Star Wars creator’s initial response to watching Episode 7, revealing that Lucas didn’t shy away from showcasing his disappointment. Considering incorporating new stories, characters and technologies with each entry was important for the filmmaker, Disney’s way of doing things didn’t sit well with him.

Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia in A still from Star Wars: The Force Awakens
A Still from Star Wars: The Force Awakens | Walt Disney Pictures

Iger wrote (via Screen Rant):

“Just prior to the global release, Kathy [Kennedy] screened ‘The Force Awakens’ for George. He didn’t hide his disappointment. ‘There’s nothing new,’ he said. In each of the films in the original trilogy, it was important to him to present new worlds, new stories, new characters, and new technologies. In this one, he said, ‘There weren’t enough visual or technical leaps forward.’”

Fans couldn’t agree more with The Empire Strikes Back creator, with some stressing that Disney dropped the ball by playing it too safe and criticized its poor handling of the legacy characters.

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Although The Last Jedi took the IP in a new and unexpected direction, The Rise of Skywalker did little to ameliorate things and was seen as a huge letdown.

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George Lucas Felt Betrayed by Disney’s Treatment of the IP

Before selling Lucasfilm to focus on his personal life and raising his daughter, Lucas had already outlined the theme for the sequel trilogy, which was going to be about the daughter and the grandchildren. Although he did submit his stories during his negotiations with Disney, the House of Mouse opted to not go in the direction that Lucas intended, which led to the filmmaker feeling betrayed.

Star War creator George Lucas
George Lucas [Photo: Joey Gannon/Wikimedia Commons]
Iger recalled:

“George immediately got upset as they began to describe the plot and it dawned on him that we weren’t using one of the stories he submitted during the negotiations. … Now, in the first meeting with him about the future of ‘Star Wars,’ George felt betrayed”

With Star Wars finally set to return to the big screen in the coming years, fans will hope Disney finally brings something new to the franchise.

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Star Wars: The Force Awakens is available to stream on Disney Plus.

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Written by Santanu Roy

Articles Published: 1456

Santanu Roy is a film enthusiast with a deep love for the medium of animation while also being obsessed with The Everly Brothers, Billy Joel, and The Platters. Having expertise in everything related to Batman, Santanu spends most of his time watching and learning films, with Martin Scorsese and Park Chan-wook being his personal favorites. Apart from pursuing a degree in animation, he also possesses a deep fondness for narrative-driven games and is currently a writer at Fandomwire with over 1000 articles.